A patent is a monopoly right that protects inventions; both products or processes. The significance of a monopoly right is that it protects the invention not only against people who copy it, but also against those who independently develop something that falls within the patent’s scope.
Patents are seen as the most valuable intellectual property rights because of their wide-ranging protection. They are also one of the most challenging and expensive to enforce.
Our patent lawyers have years of specialist patent experience. We can help you ensure your inventions are not used without your permission – and defend you if someone accuses you of infringing their rights.
What is patent infringement?
A registered patent comes with a set of claims. These specify the breadth of the patented invention. If a competitor’s product or process incorporates all of the elements of just one of the claims, that is enough to infringe that patent.
Depending on the type of invention that has been patented, an infringement can occur in different ways, such as:
- Making, selling, using or importing a patented product without the owner’s permission.
- Using, selling or importing any product that was obtained directly by someone’s patented process
What is patent litigation?
Patent litigation is the process for deciding whether someone has infringed a patented invention, and what the remedies should be as a consequence of such infringement.
The typical remedies include an injunction to prevent further infringement, damages, or an account of profits where the infringer must surrender all the profits made as a result of their unlawful behaviour.
Broadly speaking no one, not even a large organisation, wishes to enter a patent dispute. Often, a strong cease and desist letter can put a stop to any infringement. Where more robust enforcement is necessary, we can support you with litigation in the Patents Court or the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court. IPEC hears claims of lower value and less complexity than the High Court, although often these claims are just as commercially vital.
It is important to act with caution when making accusations of patent infringement. If your patent is invalid, or if no infringement was being made, then your threat to sue may be deemed ‘unjust’ and there could be a counterclaim against you.
Our patent lawyers are experts in handling patent infringement cases. We will be able to advise you on the strength of your case.
How can our patent lawyers help with your patent dispute?
Our patent lawyers can:
- Advise on the patentability of your invention
- Provide a strategic overview on the infringements risks associated with your patents, so you are alert to potential threats and litigation
- Enforce patents through IP infringement actions in the Patents Court or Intellectual Property Enterprise Court
- Coordinate complex patent disputes across multiple jurisdictions
- Appeal to the Intellectual Property Office, for example, to avoid revocation of the patent
- Defend businesses against patent infringement claims
We deal with all types of patent disputes, including infringement, patent validity and patent ownership cases. We have a proud record of success in acting for clients across a wide range of inventions and industries, and a reputation for finding commercially minded solutions that have your business goals at their heart.